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Royal Clipper Review

A small ship cruise at an attractive price, but with limitations

Review for the Caribbean Cruise on Royal Clipper
10+ Cruises • Age 70s

Rating by category

Value for Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: Dec 2017

Star Clippers has many repeat customers including ourselves. That said, there are still many things that they could easily fix that would much improve the passenger experience.

Boarding was a chaotic event. We arrived about an hour before boarding time (4 PM), and saw empty tables in the terminal and people waiting on the few seats. There was a pile of luggage blocking about half of the tables with two chairs behind them. My husband decided to sit in one of the seats behind the tables and I chose to stand, because I correctly anticipated a chaotic boarding process. At 4 PM, they began the boarding by issuing a temporary card to the ship. Then we went on the ship and got a permanent card and gave a credit card. For us it was a smooth process, because we were second in line, but for others, it meant standing in line a long time.

Another example of organizational deficiency (and lack of organizational memory) was getting the snorkeling equipment the next morning. Snorkeling gear was to be given out from 11 AM to noon. I paused to ask the tour director a question and got in the queue right at 11 AM. It snaked around the room at the stern of the ship and down a stair and out of sight. Much of the time, I was standing in the sun. By noon, I was in the stairwell in the queue and saw one of the sports team that was distributing the equipment leave. When I finally made it to the desk, I realized that the Swedish woman at the counter didn't understand the conversions between US, English and metric shoe sizes. I was given fins that were meant to be used with booties and asked for others. They were out of mediums and fortunately, I got the last size small that was the correct size and type for me. The woman two place in line behind me said that they shut down operations right after her and told the remaining people to come back the next day!!! In all, I stood in line to get the fins for an hour and 20 minutes. The excuse was that the sports team had just joined the boat, but obviously Star Clippers doesn't provide the team with adequate information to do their job.

Cabin Review

Cabin cat4

The room steward was superb and kept the cabin immaculate. He really stood out from the rest of the service in terms of excellence. When we boarded, we found that the cabin was made-up as a double bed and not as twin beds. We needed twin beds for two reasons: 1) To both be able to get out of bed in the middle of the night and 2) we both use CPAP machines and need a place to put them. As made up as a double, the left side of the bed had no bedside table.

The cabin is visually attractive, but the closet is small and the drawers in the bureau are very small. If the drawers are full, things tend to get pulled out and accumulate beneath the bottom drawer. Switching to twin beds, we got access the the good sized drawer under the second bed that was inaccessible in double bed mode.

There was the usual warning about be gentle on the toilet and we were, but the plumber was kept busy with requests when the toilet wouldn't flush. The blockages were always cleared promptly, so they were not a problem.

There were also some problems with regulation of the shower and sink water temperature on two days. One day it was too cold and the next it was scalding. Other passengers also mentioned the water temperature issues.

The shower is surrounded by a small ridge that only makes drainage worse, because the water doesn't stay inside the shower. The area outside of the shower ridge also got flooded and was more difficult to drain. We made a habit of showering before dinner, so that the steward cleaned up the wet floor and towels before we went to bed.

Port Reviews


My husband took the Spices and waterfalls and loved it. I took the bamboo falls hike, which was also very good.

6 Helpful Votes
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